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Photo: 1970 swearing in of the first U.S. EPA Administrator, B. Ruckelshaus. Source, WA Secretary of State website.
Born in the wake of elevated concern about environmental pollution, the U.S. EPA was established on December 2, 1970, to consolidate in one agency a variety of federal research, monitoring, standard-setting, and enforcement activities to ensure environmental protection.
The U.S. EPA does not handle all environmental concerns, as some issues are primarily concerns of other federal, tribal, state, or local agencies. Many environmental programs have been delegated to the states and they have primary responsibility for them.